KSUA dominates student division of AK Broadcasters Association awards

Rebecca Lawhorne/Sun Star Reporter
Nov. 15, 2011

Last week, KSUA 91.5FM, UAF’s college radio, nabbed five “Goldie” awards.

The Alaska Broadcasters Association distributes the awards annually. Since they began nine years ago, KSUA consistently won student division awards. On average, KSUA takes home the majority of the student division awards. Last year, the understaffed station fell to its all-time lowest with two wins.

The KSUA wins include “Radio Entertainment Program,” “Uniquely Alaskan,” “Radio Public Service Announcement,” and “Best Promotional Announcement.” The “Uniquely Alaskan” award is General Manager Ephy Wheeler’s most prized, she said. The winner, the weekly show “Take Out,” featured an interview with a local Alaskan musician, Willis Fireball, who moved into the Alaskan wilderness. The show focused on his life in rural Alaska and the effect of the move on his music.

Wheeler upgraded from music director to general manager in April 2010. She is looking forward to this year, she said. “We just hired a music director, radio director, and production director last week and there has already been a surge in the office,” Wheeler said. “This is the most staff we’ve had in a while.”

Ephy Wheeler, 24, KSUA general manager, and Rebecca File, 23, KSUA program director, proudly display their radio station's Goldie awards. Nov. 11, 2011. Fernanda Chamorro/Sun Star

Student staff positions have been filled for the first time in years and there 80 radio volunteers who host their own radio shows. With the increased staff, Fairbanks residents will see an increase in creative output from the station.  “We plan to pump out some awesome things this year,” Wheeler said.

“Take-Out,” which KSUA’s Program Director Rebecca File hosts, and “The Morning Blend,” are some of KSUA’s most popular programming according to the station.

The five Goldie awards, framed in gold and waiting to be hung in the KSUA office, are a sign of a good year. 

“We have a lot of talented people,” Wheeler said.  “I’m excited to see what happens.”

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